Agent Banking:

Agent Banking means providing limited scale banking and financial services to the underserved population through engaged agents under a valid agency agreement, rather than a teller/cashier. It is the owner of an outlet who conducts banking transactions on behalf of a bank.
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History of Agent Banking:
Agent Banking has been adopted and implemented with varying degrees of success by a number of developing countries. Brazil is often recognized as a global pioneer in this area since it was an early adopter of the model and over the years has developed a mature network of Agent banks covering more than 99% of the country’s municipalities. Other countries have followed suit, including Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, Argentina, Bolivia, Pakistan, Philippines, Kenya, South Africa, Uganda and India.
Concept of BRAC Bank Agent Banking:

BRAC Bank Ltd introduced its Agent Banking Service in September 2018, with an aim to cover every corner of Bangladesh with state of the art digital banking solution and compliment BRAC Bank SME business strategy. The new digital capabilities will bring convenience to people, providing them round-the-clock banking services. The bank will leverage its expertise in SME banking to make Agent Banking a widely expansive distribution channel. Agent Banking will be the vital move of BRAC Bank Limited to provide smart banking services to the unbanked population of the nation, hence boost the financial inclusion countrywide. Agent Banking is a fairly new concept in the banking industry of Bangladesh through which customers can get a limited scale of banking services who reside outside of the periphery of bank branches.

In such arrangement an agent will be appointed under agency agreement who acts as the representative of BRAC Bank Limited and carries out the transactions on behalf of it. Agent banking thus creates an alternative delivery channel that provides convenient and low cost banking services to places where a fully equipped branch is difficult to establish.

To facilitate and secure the services of agent banking, the Agent Banking Softwere (ABS) will be under use which enables the transactions to be real time through online. The transactions will be secured by two factor authentication (2FA) mechanism in which both the customer’s and the agent’s thumbprint through a biometric device will be used to validate the transaction/request. By the system customer will be notified through a system generated printed receipt of the executed transaction and an SMS alert as well.

BRAC Bank Limited looks forward to expand its agent banking network since it enables the bank to extend its services to the underserved people living in the remote region where traditional branch banking is difficult to perform. BBL also wants to make its services accessible to those who have little formal and financial literacy in a cost effective manner.

Eligibility of Agent:
  • Any Business entity having trade licenses.
  • MFI’s regulated by Microcredit Regulatory Authority (MRA) of Bangladesh;
  • NGOs registered with Social Welfare Directorate;
  • Societies registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860;
  • Cooperative Societies formed and controlled/supervised under Cooperative Society Act, 2001;
  • Government offices having branch/unit offices;
  • Courier and Mailing Service Companies registered under Ministry of Posts & Telecommunications;
  • Companies registered under The Companies Act, 1994;
  • Agents of Mobile network operators;
  • Agents of Insurance companies;
  • Local government institutions;
Criteria to become a BRAC Bank Agent
  • Individual having trade license/Firm to be Bangladeshi National/Origin.
  • Proposed Agent would have any business experience (minimum 1 year).
  • Proposed Agent would be educated having a minimum qualification S.S.C or equivalent to understand the rules and regulation of financial services.
  • Applicant’s age limit would be 18-65 years.
  • Agent need to propose one/multiple prospective locations for Agent Banking Outlet(s).
  • Applicant would be local resident of the proposed area (preferred).
  • The person/firm would be financially sound and solvent.
  • Applicant would have own/rented business premise.
  • Proposed Agent should not be a loan defaulter/Bankrupt with any bank/financial institution and not penalized by any civil or criminal court.
  • Not engaged with any subversive activities.
  • Not having other bank’s agent banking licenses.
  • Proposed Agent should have knowledge and ability to handle Technology based financial services.
  • Person should have ability to meet commitment under adverse situation.
  • Capacity to manage cash handling in Agent Banking Outlet.
  • No Bank related person should be appointed as Agent, as defined in section 26GA of the Bank-Company Act, 1991.
  • BRAC Bank officials will not be eligible to become an Agent within 1 (one) year of his/her retirement or resignation.
Agent Acquisition Process:
1st Step:
  • Agent will propose convenient bazar(s)/location(s) for agent banking. (Having any business entity in the proposed location(s) would be preferred.
  • Agent may propose for SME Unit Office(s) or standalone location(s).
2nd Step:
  • Agent Banking Team will collect agent proposes location feasibility/survey report to understand agent banking business prospect.
  • Communicate with agent for further discussion on investment and required documents.
3rd Step:
  • Agent needs to arrange premises for AB Outlet as per bank requirements.
    - Owned/rented.
    - Ground floor or 1st floor.
    - Brick building.
    - Premises size 150 sqft. – 800 Sqft. (Category A: 800 Sqft. B: 300 Sqft. & C: 150 Sqft.).
    - Toilet arrangement is must.
  • Agent needs to recruit 2 resources (1 male & 1 female preferred). Bank will provide necessary training to the agent resources to run the agent banking outlet.
4th Step:
  • Issue Agent Appointment letter.
  • Arrange foundation training for Agent and Agent staffs (Agent Field Officer).
5th Step:
  • Prepare Outlet (Branding, Furniture and IT Equipment)
  • Operation Go Live
Agent Banking Outlets
Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)
What is Agent Banking?

Answer: Agent Banking means providing limited scale banking and financial services to the underserved population through engaged agents under a valid agency agreement. It is regulated under the recent guidelines issued by Bangladesh Bank.

What is difference of Branch Banking and Agent Banking?

Answer: In terms of service there is no difference. But in nature Branch is owned by the Bank but Agent Banking Outlet owned by the third party.

Who can be a BRAC Bank Agent?

Answer: Anyone (individual/company) who has legal business entity having trade license.

What is the identity of an Agent?

Answer: Bank will issue Agent Appointment letter after approval and also issue a License on the name of agent/agent’s business before operation go live.

Any previous Business experience required to become an Agent?

Answer: Yes, At least one year business experience is required.

What kind of Business experience required?

Answer: Any business having trade license.

Is there any education qualification requirement?

Answer: Yes, interested agent would be educated having a minimum qualification S.S.C or equivalent.

Is there any age limit?

Answer: Yes, interested agent age limit would be 18-65 years.

What is the first step of interested Agent?

Answer: Agent need to propose one/multiple prospective locations to establish Agent Banking Outlet(s).

Single agent can apply for multiple Agent Banking Outlets?

Answer: Yes agent can, but interested agent need to have any business entity in the proposed/nearby locations.

Is it required to be local residence?

Answer: Yes, interested agent would be local resident of the proposed/nearest area (preferred).

Is it necessary to be financially sound and solvent to become an Agent?

Answer: The interested agent must be financially sound and solvent.

Should agent propose premise to setup Agent Banking Outlet?

Answer: Yes, Interested agent would propose own/rented premise and it should be ground/1st floor.

Is there any dependency on record with any bank/financial institution to become an agent?

Answer: Proposed agent should not be loan defaulter/Bankrupt with any bank/financial institution and not penalized by any civil or criminal court.

Can anyone be Agent who is already an Agent of other Banks?

Answer: No, One person/Company cannot be multiple Bank’s agent at a time.

Who will bear Agent Banking Outlet premise rent and advance (if required)?

Answer: Agent will be solely responsible to pay premise monthly rent and necessary advance.

Is there any mortgage to get Agent Banking license?

Answer: No, there is no mortgage required.

Is there any establishment cost to become an Agent?

Answer: Yes, Agent need to invest BDT 100,000 – BDT 300,000 (depends on premise size) to establish Agent Banking Outlets. The cost will cover necessary Branding, Furniture and IT Equipment.

Is there any other investment after establishment cost?

Answer: Yes, Agent need to ensure Cash and Agent Transactional A/C Balance BDT 10-20 Lakh to ensure daily transactions.

Is there any other monthly recurring expenses to run Agent Banking business? and who will bear the expenses?

Answer: Yes, there are some other monthly expenses like stationeries, entertainment, conveyance etc. The expenses will be borne by the Agent but bank will provide all the necessary Account Opening Forms, Transaction slip, Cash register and Attendance register.

What is difference between Bank Branch customer and Agent Banking Outlet customer?

Answer: Basically there is no difference, all accounts are bank account.

Is there any restriction of Agent Banking customer in the Bank Branch?

Answer: No there is no restriction. Agent banking customers can do any transaction in any BRAC Bank Branches.

How Agent Banking customer can do withdrawal/transfer transaction from Agent Banking Outlet?

Answer: Agent banking customer can do withdrawal/transfer transaction using Biometric/thumb print.

Is there any banking hour for Agent Banking Outlet?

Answer: The regular banking hour is 10AM-6PM, however agent might offer services beyond this period since system has capacity to do transaction 24/7.

Is there any extra charge required to maintain account in Agent Banking Outlet?

Answer: No, there is no extra charge.

Agent Banking customer can get access in the Internet Banking?

Answer: Yes, while any customer open an Account, he/she can easily get Internet Banking.

How Agent Banking customer can check account balance?

Answer: Customer can check his/her A/C balance through Pull SMS/Internet Banking/Agent Banking Outlet.

Is there any Branch Code for Agent Banking?

Answer: Yes, Agent Banking Branch Code is 8888.

Is there any Routing No. for Agent Banking?

Answer: Yes, Agent Banking Routing No. is 060270609.

Agent Banking customer can apply for Debit Card and Cheque Book?

Answer: Yes, Agent banking customer can apply Debit Card and Cheque Book through Call Center/Agent Banking Outlet.

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